The present watch is certainly one of the most exclusive, attractive and best preserved examples of the celebrated reference 4048 chronograph to appear in public in recent years. The highly charismatic, beautifully aged silvered dial has not undergone any cosmetic enhancement. The case shows hardly any wear and has not suffered from overpolishing. In fact, its proportions remain crisp, most evident to the beholders eye are the sharp edges of the lugs. Another noteworthy particularity is the Rolex rice-grain bracelet from the era bearing the stamped signature S&L for Serpico y Laino, Rolex's prestigious agent in Caracas, Venezuela.
Reference 4048 is doubtlessly amongst the rarest gems in the Rolex Oyster chronograph family. Made during a very short period only, it was the first "Oyster" chronograph by Rolex with three subsidiary dials but still featuring the more round "Calatrava-style" case of its predecessors but now fitted with a screw back.
Examples of reference 4048 in such original and well-preserved condition like the present watch are exceedingly rare. As a matter of fact, the specimen offered here for sale stands out by numerous details which are paramount to the demanding collector, such as the correct dial and the "Oyster Patent" crown featuring the Swiss cross.
It is understood that reference 4048 was only made during an extremely short period and exclusively cased in stainless steel. Research indicates that less than 100 examples of this attractive landmark model have been produced.
Different examples of reference 4048 are described and illustrated in I Cronografi Rolex - La Leggenda, Pucci Papaleo Editore, pp. 200 - 205, and in 100 Superlative Rolex Watches by John Goldberger, pp. 108 & 109.